Ken Schuck removes a hot pizza from the wood fire grill in Berne.
Photo by Ellery Wealot
By Ellery D. Wealot
They are at it again! The great minds behind Swissfest have taken on a new calling-pizza. On Wednesday, August 8, Berne Wood Fired Pizza officially started business. Located just outside West Concord, it will be open from 5-8 p.m. every Wednesday night through September.
As it happens, there are very few wood fired outdoor pizza restaurants in Minnesota. Since the Swissfest committee is no longer going to host Swissfest, members still wanted to do something together for the community. Wood fired pizza seemed like the perfect idea, and they also had the perfect place.
Many may wonder, "Why only three hours a week?" Berne Wood Fired Pizza is to be run completely by a group of 40 volunteers. "We're literally a group of friends," said Angela Organ, "My family has lived here for generations." They live busy lives, so operating only on Wednesday nights seemed the best way to work around people's schedules.
It certainly is a lot of work. Each Wednesday, volunteers must light the oven at 10a.m. It takes seven hours to heat it to 700 degrees Fahrenheit, the temperature at which the pizzas cook.They must also hand-stretch their own dough.
In addition, Berne Wood Fired Pizza will also offer live entertainment. The Berne Alp Horn Quartet perform on August 8, and there is a lot of entertainment still to come. Les Fields and the Turkey River All-Stars will play on the 15, and Cabin Fever, a bluegrass band, is scheduled for August 22. Brandon Sampson of Six Mile Grove, Samantha Tripp, and the trio Three's Accord will perform later this summer and fall.
"We're very excited," said Angela Organ. Berne Wood Fired Pizza opened for friends, family, and media on August first, and they sold over one hundred pizzas in just a few short hours. The outdoor restaurant is a great place for a picnic, and customers are encouraged to bring their own beer and wine. Most importantly, the pizza couldn't have been more delightful.
Posted: Monday, August 19, 2013
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Your pizza was outstanding! So was the atmosphere as well as all the volunteers last Wed. Evening!!! We had to leave early and didn't get to enjoy the entertainment :( but we plan on coming back and bringing family and friends. Could you please send us a list of your 2013 schedule - to decide who would like which music on which nights. When you get time? Thanks for all you do!!!! Monica and David Radloff Wanamingo :)